Jump to content
InsaneMultitasker

A real life change of perspective

Recommended Posts

I seldomly post personal details about myself - I'm fairly private in that respect. I am making an exception today.

 

In May of 2016 I was admitted to the Emergency Room with very high blood pressure and my heart skipping beats. A few tests later, I was visited by a surgeon who told me that my aortic valve was not working properly and needed to be replaced. He asked, "my schedule is full tomorrow, how does Monday sound?" Talk about a shock. After the surgery I was told that the valve was essentially destroyed, and I was very fortunate the problem was corrected before it failed. I went home in a few days but was re-admitted a week later, this time to extract over half a liter of fluid that had collected around my heart. The two successive surgeries delayed my full recovery for a few months. I eventually started cardiac rehab therapy, completed 36 sessions, and continue (to this day) attending sessions 3 times a week.

 

There are still times during each day that I feel tired or anxious. I have been told that my body spent so long compensating for the heart deficiency that it may take years to fully recover. The mechanical valve produces some weird sensations and is also quite audible to me. Changes in heart rhythm are very noticeable. At my last checkup I was told that my heart pumping strength is now normal and that I am making good progress. Through all of this, I have realized how fortunate I am to still be around to hear it doing its magic inside me. And... at 60 beats / minute, I am my own personal metronome. :grin:

 

So why am I sharing this now?

 

The first is awareness. It wasn't until months following the surgery that I began to understand how the heart problem had affected me months and years earlier. There are programs and code I wrote that make no sense to me. Some things I don't even recall working on. Since some of the symptoms are mentally 'tied' to the TI hobby, I am sometimes unable to program or work on hardware without eliciting unsavory feelings. Even recent efforts, like TIMXT, have been a struggle. At one point I was ready to get rid of everything, before a few wise friends helped me take a deep breath. They reminded me that recovery is not instantaneous. For that I am most grateful.

 

The second reason is a change in perspective. I find myself more interested in heart-related activities. Last month I saw a poster for the local 5km heart walk and immediately said to myself, 'I want to do that!'. So I signed up for my first ever charity/heart-related walk. Before this all happened I would have never looked twice at that poster. And if anyone feels like contributing to a worthy cause, I've included a link to my donation page here: http://www2.heart.org/goto/TimTesch The walk is on October 28th, less than two weeks from now. I'm a bit nervous but mostly excited for the opportunity.

 

So...today it has been exactly 17 months since my first surgery. I don't know what the future will bring. I will continue to take things a day at a time. If all goes well, I hope to work on a few of my projects over the holidays. We shall see.

 

Thanks to everyone who has provided support, knowingly or not. It is greatly appreciated.

 

tim

Edited by InsaneMultitasker
  • Like 20

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for all you do, Tim. I'm really glad to have you out there to bounce some of my crazy ideas off of. :) I'm especially glad that things went as well as they have for you--I was definitely worried for a while.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I for one am deeply grateful for all the help you have provided to this community, and to myself, over the years. We are very lucky to have you. While you have in the past hinted at your health issues, I have always refrained from prodding for more info (believe me as I was very tempted as a physician) for fear of invading your privacy.

I'm glad you are making an excellent recovery and I'm looking forward to continuing to pester you with questions for years to come! :D

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tim, I'm so glad you are starting to feel better. I guess you're like a Timex watch, you take a licking, and keep on ticking! ;)

Anyway man, we don't want to lose you, so keep doing your 60 beats a minute! You know, that's actually a good rate!

 

KleanthisNes-metronome.gif

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for sharing- and certainly I hope you keep on keeping on. I think lots of us have struggles day-to-day that we don't talk about so it's really awesome you'd want to share your struggles with us.

 

Good luck in a couple of weeks!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are loved and respected by many many people, Tim. You have been a blessing to many, myself included.

 

Hope your health continues to improve, brother... The world is a better place with you in it!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Holy, shyt, Tim. I have to say I missed seeing you at the Faire but I fully understand why. Several in my family have had heart problems, at least one has died from it, and my father is getting a pace-maker installed. So far I have not exhibited any symptoms and my last full check of my heart came up clean as a whistle. I am very thankful for that and have made numerous adjustments in my life to keep that going. Stories like yours are a reminder of the pay-off.

 

Your contributions to the TI community, IMNSHO, cannot be easily enumerated and we look forward to having you around much longer.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely glad to hear from you, Tim, and for all that you do. I tossed a few bucks into the bin for your walk too!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes Tim, back in the 90's I saw you and Mike as the people to come too for hardware and especially SCSI related things. I know these things can be real eye openers, as I was almost pinned down and crushed by one of my 'projects' back in Feb. Glad to know your still 'tickin' as was stated above, and I definitely contribute some. Does that officially make you a 'Cyborg'. :-D

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Ricky - I asked the surgeon to implant a blue LED and a 9901, alas, that didn't come to pass. No self-modifications allowed!

 

@OLD CS1 - stay vigilant. In my case, I found out about the valve issue in 1998/99, and the thought was 30-40 years down the road I'd need surgery. Alas, the non-intrusive tests did not catch the true extent of the problem and things happened much more quickly than expected.

 

@Tursi, Opry99er, digdugnate, unhuman, Omega, vorticon, ksarul, and more... thank you for the support and comments. As I have learned, and many of you know from your own experiences, health is something we can't take for granted. I found that listening to others share their experiences really helped me. But you know, it wasn't until I went through all of this and the seemingly unending number of doctor visits that I finally understood why my dad was stressed out during his health-related experiences.

 

This morning I learned that my mom is travelling here so she can participate in my walk. how cool is that? she wanted to surprise me by showing up the day of the walk but thought better of that given how finicky air travel can be ;)

  • Like 10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So glad that you're still here with us, and to see the determination that you have, Tim. It's really easy to get sidetracked and lose hope with a chronic condition, and staying strong also means getting help and support from family and friends. You have a lot of friends here to give you that!

 

Gave some $$ to support your walk, and filled out an employer request to match it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also am very glad you are still here with us Tim. I hope that everything continues to improve! If there's anything I can do to help please let me know and keep us updated on your condition.

 

Greg

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shit boy, glad to see you're ready to go big outside. Are you sure you're ready to walk metric though ? Not sure but I think 5k means a couple hundred miles or something (no one really knows cause it's metric shit, a bit of voodoo mixed with old MTV videos as far as I can tell.) At any rate glad to see you have the health and the stones to do this. Good for you bromo. More power to you.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, recovery can be a slow process especially with the heart. We are all happy you are still around.

 

it's good to know your new valve is working as expected and 60 beats per minute is great.

 

As you said take it day by day and as I am sure you have noticed you probably feel a hell of a lot better now than 17 months ago.

 

it is great to hear your Mom is flying down to participate in the walk.

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shit boy, glad to see you're ready to go big outside. Are you sure you're ready to walk metric though ? Not sure but I think 5k means a couple hundred miles or something (no one really knows cause it's metric shit, a bit of voodoo mixed with old MTV videos as far as I can tell.) At any rate glad to see you have the health and the stones to do this. Good for you bromo. More power to you.

 

Yes, it is about time I re-acquaint myself with that big, orange orb in the sky. Thx Marc

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey guys, Tim only has $350 $300 left to reach his goal, but only 5 days left.

We TI'ers come together for a good cause right?

Please << CLICK HERE >> if you want to toss a couple of bucks to the cause! :thumbsup:

Edited by --- Ω ---
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay. I gave again. Down to $275.

 

Hey guys, Tim only has $350 $300 left to reach his goal, but only 5 days left.

We TI'ers come together for a good cause right?

Please << CLICK HERE >> if you want to toss a couple of bucks to the cause! :thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks you guys. hehe. I actually pushed beyond my "goal" today :) Although not the same as running or walking, I did hit 40 minutes on the elliptical today at approx. 150 strides/minute, for just over 5km. While I was a bit thirsty and tired, I didn't feel winded. A far cry from a year ago and especially prior to my surgeries. I remember lasting less than 30 seconds when I first started using this machine last year....

  • Like 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I survived the walk! :)

 

Even though my mom "brought" a few days of chilly, midwest weather with her -- it was 35 degrees and breezy when we arrived at the gathering spot - there was a sizeable showing of participation. One would have guessed the event took place in the higher latitudes seeing all of the parkas and sweatshirts on display.

 

Everyone got in line at 9am. We decided to line up near the end, to avoid the quicker walkers who would inevitably want to pass us. This worked out well until we got caught up in a slow-moving mass of baby strollers and dog walkers. A quick detour allowed us to get in front of most of the obstacles <grin>. By the final third of the walk I had to remove my coat as the combination of sun and exercise made me too warm. I suppose I still am a cold-weather person at heart.

 

The entire walk took roughly 90 minutes. I greatly anticipated this walk and found myself a bit surprised that it was over so soon. I certainly plan to participate again next year and as I improve over all, I hope to get involved in other activities.

 

Thank you all for your support and words of encouragement. The TI community truly is remarkable.

 

tim

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I seldomly post personal details about myself - I'm fairly private in that respect. I am making an exception today.

 

Well sir, having been the recipient of what is now three heart procedures, I am truly empathetic!

 

The first was a simple stent insertion some 20 years ago. One would think that would have altered my lifestyle, but we french canadians do love our poutine!

 

Then about 8 years ago I had a valve replacement - THAT was a biggie, and it DID require some major changes to how I treat this body. But as (bad) luck would have it, I just came through my 3rd procedure a (single- thank the stars) bypass surgery about 6 weeks ago.

 

The thing that scares me is that organic valves (when folks call me a cow, they are partially correct) only last for about 10-20 years, so I'm going to be due for surgery # 4 soon!

 

So I really do understand what you're going through!

 

And although it might be the height of political incorrectness to say this, I am sure glad all this happened to me in Canada, where the total cost of all my medical/prescription bills was $0. (and don't believe the BS US insurance companies like to spout out, I picked my surgeons myself and the longest wait I had to undergo was a month for the valve replacement - which would have been shortened had I been in a more precarious position).

 

But all that aside, be well sir! We're recuperating together this time (if that offers some solace of some kind!)

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...